LA middle school students treated with Narcan after suspected overdose, officials say
LOS ANGELES - There is growing concern about the safety of students at Los Angeles Unified schools.
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On Monday, two LAUSD students were struck by vehicles in two separate incidents at Fairfax High School and Joyner Elementary School.
That same day, at least three students at Johnnie L. Cochran Middle School in LA's Arlington Heights neighborhood were sickened following a suspected overdose after officials said they ingested an unknown substance.
Officials later confirmed Narcan was used to revive the students, but would not confirm it was an opioid overdose.
First responders were called to the campus in the 4000 block of Johnnie Cochran Vista at about 11:35 a.m. after they received a "possible overdose" report, authorities said.
According to the Los Angeles Fire Department, paramedics tended to children who experienced an "altered level of consciousness after possible exposure or ingestion of a yet-unknown substance."
SkyFOX images showed a police presence as well as ambulance and fire crews at the school.
Since distributing Narcan district-wide, Los Angeles Unified Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said it’s been used 26 times to advert the loss of life.
"We have a number of students who are reluctant to speak with us about how they obtained those drugs. They are reluctant to even admit that they have those drugs, but what we do know is that Narcan was used on those students with the expected positive effect," he said.
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LA Mayor Karen Bass issued the following statement:
"In the past two weeks, we’ve seen near-death overdoses at an LAUSD middle school, the death of a mother and critical injury of her child as they walked to school, and a stabbing on the grounds of an LAUSD school. These devastating incidents are unacceptable. Superintendent Carvalho and I spoke yesterday about strategies to keep our teachers, students and employees safe and together we will host convenings of stakeholders and community members focusing on safety in and around our schools. We must – and will – do more."
Since September 2022 when 15-year-old Melanie Ramos was found dead in a campus bathroom at Helen Bernstein High School in Hollywood of a suspected fentanyl overdose, there have been multiple calls to schools in Los Angeles for suspected overdoses.
Ramos’ mother is now advocating for "Melanie’s Law," which aims to tackle the youth fentanyl crisis.
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City News Service contributed to this report.